If Team India had a forgettable 2011 Tour To England, well 2014 might just be remembered for happier reasons.
If Team India had a forgettable 2011 Tour To England, well 2014 might just be remembered for happier reasons. Mumbai starlet Ajinkya Rahane scored a maiden ODI hundred to seal the series 3-0 in the favour of the visitor’s with a crushing nine-wicket win over England in the fourth ODI at Edgbaston.
With that victory, India are now the new number one ODI side in the world in the ICC rankings. With the World Cup in sights, a series victory in England might come as a relive for Dhoni and the management after a torrid Test series.
India won the toss and put England into bat with the conditions favouring the bowlers and Bhuvneshwar Kumar took the advantage by claiming two early wickets. A double blow at the top saw the back of skipper Alastair Cook and Alex Hales but a fighting 67 from Moeen Ali restored some parity as England posted 206.
Fellow paceman Mohammed Shami too wrecked up the England middle-order as only Joe Root (44) and Eoin Morgan (32), who put on 80 for the fourth wicket, made significant contributions to their paltry total.
In reply, Indian top-order started on a strong note with Rahane (106) and Shikhar Dhawan (97 not out) clobbering England’s attack to all corners of the ground in an opening stand of 183. Ajinkya Rahane who had ton on the tour as well at Lord’s, was in not in a forgiving mood as the Mumbai-born hit four fours in five balls off James Anderson. Southpaw Shikhar Dhawan, who struggled for runs on this tour, too arrived himself on the scene.
But just when it seemed India would inflict England’s first home ODI defeat by 10 wickets, England chipped away the wicket of the centurion Rahane. However, Dhawan made sure there were no more hiccups as the southpaw emphatically sealed a win with more than 19 overs to spare when he smashed Gurney for six.
This defeat meant England has now lost five of their last six ODI series which is a calamity of sorts for ECB and as for MS Dhoni, the Indian skipper became the most successful captain overtaking Mohammed Azharrudin. This series, which marks the start of both teams’ run-in to next year’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, wraps up at Headingley on Friday.
On the hindsight, clearly, India looked the better team in the ODI series with the fielding, batting, bowling on the mark. Ravi Shastri’s role with the players has done the trick for the Men In Blue and it seems, the Englishmen need someone similar.